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Coronavirus: With two nurses self-isolating, King George Hospital dialysis unit still in good spirits

PUBLISHED: 17:00 03 April 2020

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Nurses in the dialysis unit at King George Hospital are trying to keep morale up in the midst of the coronavirus fight.

Charge nurse Adrian Capitan. Picture: Adrian CapitanCharge nurse Adrian Capitan. Picture: Adrian Capitan

One nurse has had to stay home with Covid-19 symptoms and another nurse has family members who are ill, so she had to self-isolate as well.

Despite this charge nurse, Adrian Capitan said their work amidst the coronavirus pandemic has renewed their sense of purpose.

Adrian, who has been a nurse for almost 20 years, said: “Even though we are tired and exhausted I can sense the spirit in the unit.

“Although we risk our lives to save our patients’ lives, I think we all realise this is a noble profession.”

Redbridge Renal Unit's staff nurses Fatmata Bangura, Marlon Mangosing and Thelma Honorio. Picture: Adrian CapitanRedbridge Renal Unit's staff nurses Fatmata Bangura, Marlon Mangosing and Thelma Honorio. Picture: Adrian Capitan

He said though other departments have been overwhelmed and didn’t have enough personal protective equipment (PPE) the renal unit has been fortunate and had enough equipment.

Nurse Marlon Mangosing, who first developed Covid-19 symptoms on Thursday, March 26 said he is eager to get back to work to help out his colleagues while they’re short-staffed.

He said: “I feel bad for self-isolating because I feel like I left my colleagues in the battlefield.

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“Everyone is scared.

“The higher-ups will say everything will be fine, and will give you assurances, but they’re not on the battle line.”

The renal unit sees more than 100 patients, who need to come in three times a week for dialysis treatment.

If they suspect a patient is displaying Covid-19 symptoms they need to be isolated immediately.

Staff nurse Joanna Dapatnapo. Picture: Adrian CapitanStaff nurse Joanna Dapatnapo. Picture: Adrian Capitan

Since the patients can’t have visitors Marlon said the nurses’ time with them is even more important now.

“It’s only the staff that’s there for them. They’re already unwell and their morale is low.

“It seems now we are the son and daughter of the patient, because they see us more often than their own relatives.”

Marlon is starting to feel better after mild Covid-19 symptoms and hopes to return to work on Tuesday.

He said while he appreciates the support the NHS has received from the public, he hopes all units in the hospital can have proper PPE. “Assurances and clapping of hands isn’t enough, we need protection, because we also get sick.”


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